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Palaeography, Latin

(1,065 words)

Author(s): Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) | Marchioli, Nicoletta Giovè
[English version] From its beginnings, palaeography was regarded as an auxiliary discipline - useful and even indispensable for deciphering and dating manuscripts and documents. It was understood this way by Daniel Van Papenbroeck [8. I-LII] and Jean Mabillon [4], whose works, dealing mainly with diplomatics, mark the beginning of scholarly occupation with the history of the Latin writing system [2]. The term palaeography was coined by the Maurist Bernard de Montfaucon [7]. Soon enough, the new di…

Oxyrhynchus

(551 words)

Author(s): Quack, Joachim (Berlin) | Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice)
This item can be found on the following maps: Egypt | Pilgrimage | Egypt [German version] A. The city City in Middle Egypt, modern Al-Bahnasā; in Pharaonic times the capital of the 19th nome of Upper Egypt, Egyptian pr-mḏd, 'meeting house (?)'. Originally O. was one of the main cult centres of Seth as well as of Thoeris. Because Seth had killed Osiris, it was mentioned in traditional lists of nomes as a banned place. There are hardly any archaeological finds from the pre-Ptolemaic period; the ancient centre of the nome was presumably located in spr-mrw. During the Graeco-Roman period, the…

Abbreviations

(2,775 words)

Author(s): Giovè Marchioli, Nicoletta (Triest) | Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) | Menci, Giovanna (Florence)
[German version] A. General An abbreviation (Latin notae, sigla, siglae) consists of a semantic element -- the alphabetic lettering of the abbreviated word -- and a symbolic element, signs referring to the summarizing character of what is written. The use of abbreviations is justified for a number of practical reasons: first, because they make reading quikker and more accurate, and secondly, because they save time and space. In classical antiquity and, in a wider sense, right up to the late Middle Ages,…

Writing styles

(2,658 words)

Author(s): Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) | Menci, Giovanna (Florence) | De Robertis, Teresa (Florence)
[German version] I. Definition The concept of writing styles (WS) is used in Greek palaeography to classify certain frequently used and constantly recurring script types. The concept of style (or style levels or stylization level) also encompasses the various calligraphic levels of a hand. In Latin palaeography, however, WS are rarely talked of; instead, stylization or the type of a script are used to differentiate between book hands. Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) II. Greek Writing Styles [German version] A. Classification Since the work of Turner [5], the following criteria a…

Minuscule

(2,079 words)

Author(s): Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) | Frioli, Donatella (Rimini) | John, James J. (Ithaca, N. Y.)
I. Overview [German version] A. Definition Minuscule, in contrast to majuscule, is the name given to the form of writing where letters, often ligatured (Ligature), are organised in a(n idealised) four-line system: the two middle lines delimit the space for the bodies of the letters and the outer lines that for ascenders and descenders. Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice) [German version] B. Greek writing In the history of Greek writing minuscule developed out of late antique cursive (Writing, styles of), which was used exclusively for non-literary texts. The earliest…

Commentary

(5,637 words)

Author(s): Guthmüller, Bodo (Marburg/Lahn RWG) | Marshall, Peter K. (Venice) | Eleuteri, Paolo (Venice)
Guthmüller, Bodo (Marburg/Lahn RWG) [German version] Commentary (CT) Commentary, the continuous explication of a text, was a widespread phenomenon even in Antiquity. The earliest fully extant ancient commentary on a Latin work was that of the grammarian Servius on Virgil (early 5th cent. AD). Its impact extended into the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The influence of the history of genres is apparent in the linguistic and factual analysis of words and phrases and in the citing of sources and parallel…
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